We are all mosaic of broken little things, a patchwork quilt of mistakes and missed takes. Some people hide in the hems of denial while others try to embrace these flaws. Some run off to silence, others turn to noise. We’ve heard songs, read poetry, seen art about healing. But do we ever truly heal?

I ended my 2017 fleeing to Binabaje Hills for a sweet escape and I realize there is no better way to welcome the new year than to spend it in the cradle of mother nature. Tucked in the fringes of Alicia is another agri-eco space that is slowly making its name in the tourism scene. Cambugsay Healing Hills, located in Brgy. San Pascual, is a convention of beautiful rolling hills and still waters from the Malingin Dam.


Five years ago, I came here with two lovely friends for a summer vacation. Back then, I was mostly drawn to the majestic grandeur of Malingin Dam. It was only during my second visit that I paid closer attention to its surrounding hills. Why do they call it healing hills? Do the hills heal broken hearts? Do they cleanse the soul? Do they fix your life?

I have never found the exact answer but here’s what I learned.

These hills will not heal broken hearts.
Apologies for the hopeless romantics but these hills cannot mend those aching hearts. Instead, it gives you the quiet you badly needed. It listens in silence and invites you to be still for once— physically, mentally, emotionally.


These hills will not cleanse your soul.
It does offer you the physical kind of cleansing. You can sweat over trekking the surrounding hills. Its lake-like (for the lack of words) dam is also a great spot for swimming, kayaking and fishing. You can opt for a camping, too. All of these for FREE!


These hills will not fix your life.
The weather was not on our side when my friend and I went up the hills. It was raining and the sky was a dull gray. But this did not dwindle our excitement. We were far too happy recalling our memories from five years ago. Looking back, I found that neither the scorching heat or the pouring rain count as much when you’re in the right place with the right people.

Five years ago at the same spot.

Did we heal in Cambugsay Healing Hills? Not really.

Our lives did not get better, we still have a long list of troubles on our backs. But we were two young, dumb, and broke(n) who found a breather in nature and a nudge to push through. Which is good enough.

So if you’re looking for a pit stop on your 100mph drive in this road called life, you might want to head into this place. And take me with you, please! I sure want to come back. 😉


  • From the barangay proper of San Pascual, you can hike your way to the hills to save money. It’s just a kilometer of narrow dirt road. Plus you get to enjoy the scenery.
  • I haven’t heard of this yet but I’m quite certain you can traverse to Cambugsay Healing Hills from the Binabaje Hills. Anyone up to prove this? Let’s!